[rspec-users] Cucumber fat client

Matt Wynne matt at mattwynne.net
Sun Dec 14 12:24:55 EST 2008


On 9 Dec 2008, at 09:43, aslak hellesoy wrote:

> Hi folks,
>
> Cucumber has become popular a lot quicker than I had anticipated.
> Still, with its plain text nature it is still limited to programmers  
> (in most teams).
>
> I want to close the gap between customers/product owners/business  
> analysts and programmers,
> and I'm convinced that a fat client is needed to achieve this.  
> Something that lets people
> browse, edit and run features inside a friendly user interface.
>
> So I'm asking you - what would this user interface be like? How do  
> people want to access it
> and use it?

We have a person filling the 'Product Owner' role who is completely  
non-technical.

I think it would be nice if there was a way for her to be able to do  
this:
	* fire up the client
	* choose 'open project'
	* enter the URL to the git repo where the project lives
	* then see a nice overview of all the features
	* be able to print off features for taking to meetings, reading on  
the train etc, nicely formatted
	* be able to edit features and easily push the changes back to the  
git repo

To me, this is more important than being able to run them. I don't  
think non-techie users need to be able to run features as they won't  
be able to do anything about it when they inevitably fail. I also hate  
the idea of having to set up Ruby, gems etc on a non-techie person's  
computer. It's better, IMO, if the tool makes it easy for them to push  
their changes into a git repo where they can either be swept into the  
main dev fork / branch, or automatically run using CI, et etc.

So that's where I think the focus of such a tool should be - browsing,  
reviewing and editing features rather than executing them, and with  
some SCM integration to make all that easier for non-techies. I do  
think that eventually the ability to run features will become  
important too, but I would like to see this side of the problem solved  
first.

Obviously there's a dependency on git in what I'm suggesting, but I'm  
sure it would be easy enough to plug in other SCMs if that was popular  
enough.

Matt Wynne
http://blog.mattwynne.net
http://www.songkick.com



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